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Re: James' Ideas - A Question stjames

Posted by IsoM on December 25, 2001, at 1:10:53

In reply to Re: James tangent, posted by stjames on December 24, 2001, at 23:59:41

I do agree with you, James. Neurochemistry is such a complicated subject & we've hardly begun to scratch the surface. What we know about neurotransmitters is just at the beginning stage. I did understand that SSRIs just inhibit the reuptake of serotonin (like the acronym says) but I wonder if it doesn't perhaps "reset" something in our brain chemistry still.

I noticed something about my use of antidepressants & because I'm open about my use of them, many other people that I know who may never have talked about their need of them, have opened up to me. I've seen a similar pattern develop among many users. If someone has been on ADs for a relatively short period & then tapers off them after their depression is judged clinically better, or "cured", the relapses seem to be much less than those who are on ADs for a couple of years or more.

I initially went on tricyclics to control my migraines. I had them as often as once or twice a week. Beta-blockers did nothing but give me a severe asthma attack as the dose was increased. Actually, the tricyclics didn't help the migraines, but I was surprised at my mood change. I wasn't seriously depressed before but felt really low in winter & had difficulty controlling my frustration & irritation if things didn't work out right. While the AD made a remarkable difference, I wouldn't have said my life was unbearable before.

But when I try to go off ADs now, my rage, irritation, & bleakness are SO powerful - frightening so. I can feel such a rage over little things, that I'd gladly drag a person from their car & beat them for failing to signal a left-turn at a light. I'm just a slight-boned woman but people honestly stepped around me when I felt like that. I'd always been easily stressed before & pretty low many times but could still feel real laughter & joy other times.

Now, it's as if the ADs are absolutely necessary. I DO like feeling as I do now (with the ADs working), but why the extreme change? And I'm not unique this way. Many others I've asked have also said the same thing.

**What's caused this change in our brains?**

And I KNOW & INSIST that it's not just that I can't properly remember how I felt before. I do remember never feeling so horribly negative before I ever started meds.


> > IsoM - I would think that SRIs would force our bodies to produce more serotonin. SRIs block the reuptake of serotonin back into the presynaptic neuron, so the body is unable the reuse the neurotransmitter. The serotonin "trapped" in the gap is, for the most part, metabolized, but the levels of serotonin in the gap are still going to be higher while taking the antidepressant than they would be after the antidepressant is stopped. This would result in the serotonergic withdrawl syndrome that is seen; and the less serotonin the body is producing would result in more severe withdrawl effects.
> james here....
> If mental illness were simply a lack or too much of something, I would suspect most of us would be cured. To me it is about regulation, stopping the meds means the body must rebalance itself, but not in the sence of making more or less NT.
> Neurology is far from simple, so more NT=better/worse is also too simple. The end result
> of mood is not a one step process from synaptic gap functions to mood changes. There are many other steps to the end result, mood.
> AD's seem to act at the gap but I have long felt AD's do not get at the root cause of clinical depression. If they did the sucess rate would be higher. Sometimes you can work out a problem by starting in the middle; AD's do work for many. The sucess of dirty drugs and polypharm seems to indicate, again, that the root cause is missed but by a shotgun approach can knock the system into a better state of functioning.
> Or I could reason that there is no one root cause/treatment for clinical depression; those that do well on AD's are a "good fit". Agents that effect different parts of the chain of events resulting in mood are needed to treat
> the non-responders and hard to treat.
> Cam, comments ?
> j




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